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Mathematical biology and the existence of biological laws

Dorato, Mauro (2012) Mathematical biology and the existence of biological laws. [Published Article]

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    Abstract

    An influential position in the philosophy of biology claims that there are no biological laws, since any apparently biological generalization is either too accidental, fact-like or contingent to be named a law, or is simply reducible to physical laws that regulate electrical and chemical interactions taking place between merely physical systems. In the following I will stress a neglected aspect of the debate that emerges directly from the growing importance of mathematical models of biological phenomena. My main aim is to defend, as well as reinforce, the view that there are indeed laws also in biology, and that their difference in stability, contingency or resilience with respect to physical laws is one of degrees, and not of kind


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    Item Type: Published Article
    Keywords: Laws, Mathematical biology, Contingency Dynamical systems, Reducibility
    Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology
    General Issues > Laws of Nature
    Depositing User: Mauro Dorato
    Date Deposited: 20 Mar 2012 16:58
    Last Modified: 20 Mar 2012 16:58
    Item ID: 9058
    Journal or Publication Title: Probabilities, Laws and Structure
    Publisher: Springer
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9058

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